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Gut Health At A Barbeque

It’s that time of the year. Everyone is firing up the grills and spending the afternoon by the pool. And for many, it can be a time of added stress (especially with gut issues). You might be worried about the food, being in a bathing suit, or any of the other stressors that come along with being out of your normal routine. Stressing about the bbq is only going to do more harm to your gut .

I remember in years past having so much stress about a change in routine (like a holiday) that it became a self fulfilling prophecy. I stressed about the bloat, and the bloat became a reality. Now I know better, and our clients do too. Part of the digestive healing journey does include participating in family functions and fun memories, because isolation only adds more stress.


Here are some tips to empower you at your next gathering and for any holiday party 👇🏼

👉🏼 Don’t skip meals: When you skip meals you create more stress on your body and you’re more likely to overeat later on if you get too hungry.
👉🏼 Prioritize balancing your plate with protein, fat, carbs/fiber when possible! Blood sugar balance is foundational to optimal gut health. When blood sugar is stable, your gut symptoms will improve because you are decreasing added stress on your body, you are less likely to overeat and you will feel satisfied with your meal.
👉🏼 Drink water! 80-100 oz if possible: Plus minerals! Many of our clients find that time in the sun in the summer is a huge trigger for their digestive symptoms. But it doesn’t have to be that way when you are optimally hydrated and prioritizing added electrolytes. Your cells need the water and so does your gut.
👉🏼 Bring food if you need to. If you know you will be less stressed having something you know works for you, do it! You might even bring something everyone else enjoys! And if needed, communicate your needs to the host beforehand.
👉🏼 Do something to decrease stress beforehand (go for a walk, practice some deep breathing, get outside in the sun ☀️, etc—> whatever relaxes you!)
👉🏼 Eat cooked veggies instead of raw veggies (they are easier to tolerate when broken down). Instead of bringing a raw salad, opt to bring a side of cooked veggies or sweet potatoes. Cooking vegetables makes them easier to tolerate.

👉🏼 If you plan to consume alcohol, make sure you drink plenty of water and electrolytes in between. If possible, choose options that are less likely to cause symptoms. Note: Too much alcohol (or sometimes alcohol at all) will cause unwanted bloating, loose stools and symptoms.
👉🏼 and most importantly, focus on the memories and HAVING FUN!

Having fun is a part of the healing process…and often missed in the midst of food stress, countless supplements, etc!

Life is too short to skip out on memories with friends/family, etc. because you’re stressed about your gut issues. Sometimes the best thing you can do to support your gut is change your environment, change your routine, and actually enjoy yourself💃🏼.

For many of our clients (and myself in the past) they look back and realize that the isolation they forced as a result of their symptoms only made things worse.

And if you’re ready to truly find relief from your symptoms so that you no longer have to stress about holidays, the gutTogether™️ program is here for you! We help busy women just like you identify their root causes, find sustainable relief, and start living again! 💃🏼

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Hi, I’m Dr. Heather

Registered dietitian and helps people struggling with bloating, constipation, and IBS find relief from their symptoms and feel excited about food again.

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Dr. Heather Finley
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